Struggling with creating memorable characters? Here are five tips on how to create the best book characters.
1. Depth, Personality, Motivation
The big three important things for a character to have are depth, personality, and motivation. You may be asking how do I get started on any of these three.
When you have the story planned out in your head you want to create characters that will be unique and different. In order to create depth you must give your character an arc. Having an arc for a character means how you want them to develop as the story goes, do you want them to change on a negative or positive way.
Personality are the qualities and interest of your character including their skills. Having certain interests helps a reader understand who they are. When giving them certain skills and flaws it shows the ability of a character and help us understand how they would react in certain situations where there skills are lacking or needed. This helps the character have depth when put into a major situation that you create in your book.
Motivation becomes part of this character. As the story progresses as readers we need to see the motivation of the characters clearly. their actions need to be justified whether its the protagonist, antagonist, or secondary characters. This create a deep character arc and lets the story get interesting when characters butt heads or help each other to a victory.
2. Reflect Your Interests Through the Characters
Sometimes its hard to create a character’s personality entirely from scratch. That’s why I strongly encourage all writers to use some of their interests. For one thing it makes it easier to write about your interests, so why not have a character or two that reflects that. This saves time and you can go into more detail about your interest to make your characters comes alive.
3. Reveal Your Characters in Detail
Many authors describe their characters in certain visual detail. Some may reflect a character’s appearance by what they wear only, or physical features and even mannerisms. I encourage that all three can be useful. However, some authors alone use one of these strongly and create works of art. If you want to play to your strengths in one of these categories, I strongly encourage you to use details of anything to describe your characters and bring them to light that way. All three should technically be used but if you are stronger at describing a mannerism, a tone of voice or even clothing styles, then go for it.
4. Create a Questionnaire for Your Characters
Creating questions for your character to answer is a great way to create depth and a story arc for them. Another type of questionnaire is for the writer themselves. Create basic questions that you want your character to have including skills, interests, background, personality traits and more. These questions are guideline tools to help with motivation and to find placement for your character in your story. Knowing who your character is inside and out can help you when thinking of their behavior with other characters and a situation.
5. Use People You Know
Sometimes inspiration comes from other people’s personalities. You may have several friends at your disposal to create characters through them. Whether its certain phrases, mannerisms, language, appearance, if the character starts to remind you of someone, use them as a source of inspiration.
FEATURED IMAGE VIA CANVA
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